Oedipus - Sophocles and The Theory of Tragedy

Oedipus - Sophocles and The Theory of Tragedy - Sophocles...

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Sophocles and The Theory of Tragedy 1 of 7 SOPHOCLES Sophocles ( Greek : Σοφοκλής; 495 BC 406 BC ) was one of the three great ancient Greek tragedians . Other tragedians were Aeschylus and Euripides . According to the Suda -- a massive 10th century Byzantine Greek   historical encyclopædia of the ancient Mediterranean world with 30,000 entries, many drawing from ancient sources that have since been lost —he  wrote 123 plays; in the dramatic competitions of the Festival of Dionysus (where each submission by one playwright consisted of four plays; three tragedies and a satyr play ), he won more first prizes (around 20) than any other playwright, and placed second in all others he participated. Each contest traditionally had three entrants. His first victory was in 468 BC. Only seven of his tragedies have survived complete in the medieval manuscript tradition. The most famous are the three tragedies concerning Oedipus and Antigone : these are often known as the Theban plays or The Oedipus Cycle , although they do not make up a single trilogy. Life Sophocles was born in a small rural community in Attica . His birth took place a few years before the Battle of Marathon in 490 BC : the exact year is unclear. An ancient life of Sophocles says that the young Sophocles won awards in wrestling and music , and was graceful and handsome. As a very young man, he led the chorus of at the Athenian celebration of the victory against the Persians at the Battle of Salamis in 480 BC . BATTLE OF MARATHON: Battle that took place between the Greeks and the Persians at Marathon, a plain on Athenian territory 25 miles northeast of Athens, in 490 bc. It was fought by the Athenians and their allies against the forces of the Persian king Darius I. Greek victory at the Battle of Marathon was of crucial importance in saving Greece from Persian domination. For an explanation of the motives behind the Persian campaign in Greece and of the circumstances under which the Battle of Marathon took place, modern 1
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Sophocles and The Theory of Tragedy 2 of 7 knowledge relies almost entirely on the Greek popular traditions recorded by Herodotus about 50 years later. Herodotus presents the campaign as having been initiated against the Greek cities of Athens by Darius I in revenge for their support of a revolt within the Persian empire of the Ionian cities of Asia Minor in 499-494 BC. At the same time, he portrays the Persian motive as the conquest of the whole of Greece. In advance of his invasion, Darius demanded the submission of all Greek states. Sophocles enjoyed a public life outside the theatre. In 443 BC he served as one of the treasurers of Athens. The Athenian people elected him as one of the ten generals for 440, during which he participated in the crushing of the revolt of Samos , one of the cities in Athen’s Delian League. Several ancient writers have commented on Sophocles'
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Oedipus - Sophocles and The Theory of Tragedy - Sophocles...

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